What does the European Capital of Culture stand for?

More than a cultural festival, the European Capital of Culture brings the role of culture and of the sustainable manner in which it could contribute to the prosperity of citizens and the city into question.

The European Capital of Culture (ECoC) title is assigned EU city of a candidate or pre-candidate countries, for one year. By 2019, 60 cities will have held the title of European Capital of Culture. The program is considered to be a EU flagship cultural initiative.

 

Since 1985 the European Union designates one or two cities, from candidate or pre-candidate countries, as European Capital of Culture. Throughout a year, chosen cities are expected to present a constant innovative cultural program that emphasizes the richness, the diversity and the similarities of European culture to an international audience.

 

In 2021, Romania and Greece will each host one European Capital of Culture. With the launch of the Ministry of Culture’s application bid in 2014, Bucharest enters a competitive process throughout which it has to demonstrate it can provide a unique, promising program of cultural, artistic and related activities for one year.

 

Often, cities that aim for the European Capital of Culture title participate in the competition for the regeneration and transformation benefits associated with this initiative, that improve the cultural life of the city — not only at program levels, but involving the infrastructure and the skills acquired during the application period or prior to obtaining the title.

 

The cultural programs of Bucharest have a remarkable history and notable cultural effects. Annually, the ARCUB Cultural Centre organizes and becomes involved as a partner in over 150 events that mix together art, culture and the local character of our city.

12%

ESTIMATED TOURISM GROWTH RATE AFTER HOLDING THE EUROPEAN CULTURAL CAPITAL TITLE.

1985

THE YEAR THAT STARTED THE “EUROPEAN CAPITAL OF CULTURE” ACTION.

60

THE NUMBER OF CITIES THAT WILL HAVE BEEN EUROPEAN CAPITALS OF CULTURE BY 2019.

HISTORY

The “European Capital of Culture” action debuted in 1985 at the initiative of the Greek Minister of Culture Melina Mercouri. She supported the importance of the role of culture, specially in regard to promoting European integration.

The “European Capital of Culture” action debuted in 1985 at the initiative of the Greek Minister of Culture Melina Mercouri. She supported the importance of the role of culture, especially in regard to promoting European integration. To her proposal, ministers of culture of the European Community established an annual event entitled European Capital of Culture. This event became the European Capital of Culture program in 1999.

Its main purpose is to “highlight the cultural wealth and diversity of the cities of Europe whilst emphasizing their shared cultural heritage and the vitality of the arts”. Over time, various changes have occurred in the structure of the program, most recently in April 2014. According to the new structures, a city of a candidate or potential candidate country can hold the title of European Capital of Culture every three years, starting 2021.

1985 Athens

1986 Florence

1987 Amsterdam

1988 Berlin

1989 Paris

1990 Glasgow

1991 Dublin

1992 Madrid

1993 Antwerp

1994 Lisbon

1995 Luxembourg

1996 Copenhagen

1997 Thessaloniki

1998 Stockholm
1999 Weimar

2000  Avignon, Bergen, Bologna, Bruxelles, Helsinki, Krakow, Prague, Reykjavík, Santiago de Compostela
2001 Rotterdam, Porto
2002 Bruges, Salamanca

2003 Graz

2004 Genoa, Lille

2005Cork
2006Patras

2007 Sibiu, Luxembourg, The Great Region
2008  Liverpool, Stavanger
2009  Vilnius, Linz
2010  Essen + The Ruhr Region, Istanbul, Pécs
2011  Turku, Tallinn
2012  Guimarães, Maribor
2013  Marseille-Provence, Košice
2014  Umeå, Riga
2015  Mons, Pilsen
2016  San Sebastian, Wroclaw
2017 Aarhus, Paphos
2018  Leeuwarden, Valetta
2019  Matera, Plovdiv
2020  Rijeka, Galway
2021  Timișoara, Novi Sad

Romania’s ECoC Calendar

December 10, 2014 – Launch of the application call for interested cities to apply for the ECoC title in 2021.

December 10, 2014 – October 10, 2015 – The bid preparation period for the cities interested in winning the ECoC 2021 title.

December 7 – 10, 2015 – Period of selection and decision of the shortlisted cities for the ECoC title in 2021.

December 11, 2015 – August 12, 2016 – Preparation period for the second bid of the pre-selected cities.

September 15 – 16, 2016 – Organizing the final selection.

September 16, 2016 – The formal designation of the winning city.